Pathologic 2


The first installment of the planned 3 part series for Pathologic 2.

This first part you will be playing out Haruspex’s storyline, set in the early 1900s in a steppe settlement that is named Gorkhon, in an era of superstition & traditional medicine, whose customs ignore the modern world and shun outsiders. You will be playing as Artemy Burakh also known as Haruspex, the son of the town doctor who left for school to become a doctor himself 5 years prior. After receiving a disturbing letter from your father requesting that you journey to his side as fast as you can, you pack up and leave for Gorkhon. As you arrive, you are attacked by 3 men, whom you manage to kill in self-defense, though you are labeled a murderer by some town folks. You soon find out that your father was murdered as well, as the town has gone crazy with a plague running rampant through the population killing many of the citizens daily. You must piece together the story and try to save the people of the town, as well as yourself, from this deadly unseen disease that has its grasp deep into the veins of the town. We cannot save everyone, but perhaps we can save the town and rebuild from what is left.

Released on May 23, 2019, by the developer Ice-Pick Lodge & published tinyBuild, this is a rich psychological thriller that is narrative-driven, choices matter with survival aspects. It is a brutal experience and designed to be that way; there is a patch coming soon with a difficulty slider to ease the difficulty for those whose taste for such brutality is not as high as others (though the developer hopes you do not utilize it and that you play the way it is intended). You have 12 days to end the plague; spend your time wisely or ultimately fail. The survival system gets progressively harder in a world with minimal resources to start with; manage your hunger, thirst, tiredness, and immunity with great care or your actor will perish.  Although you will be replacing another actor, the previous actor's stats carry over to the new one, which means you also keep your loot (but if you were starving to death, you will be also starving when you respawn). The good news is that you can load any of your previous saves to try a different approach.

For settings.

Language: English or Russian

Display: Mode; Windowed/Fullscreen, Resolution, Render Scale

Graphics: VSync, Gamma, Field of View, Texture Size, Quality, Level of Detail, Anisotropic Filtering, Shadow Quality, Shadow Distance, Contact Shadows, AO Fields, Anti-Aliasing, Additional Reflections, SSR, Depth of Field, Motions Blur, Soft Particle, and volumetric Lighting.

Controls: Mouse sensitivity, Invert Mouse.

Key Bindings: View and Manage your binds

Audio: Master, Music, Effects, & Voice Sliders; Subtitles and Dialog Subtitles on/off.

After 14 hours, I am halting my gameplay for now till some patches are released for the title. I tried to look past the optimization issues, the slow loads into rooms, but I also discovered a memory leak that after a while of playing simply bogs the game down till I have to restart. Even closing the game is a pain, it stops responding on exit and bogs my system down for a few minutes till it manages to close or I force close it with task manager. On my system ram usages goes from 25% to 85% on loading the game, then as I enter buildings the ram slowly continues to fill to 99% till the game simply says nope! and I have to restart. This was my worst issue. I can deal with optimizing issue tweaking settings, but nothing I did helped the ram issue. I will revisit the title again after some patching as it is quite an addictive play.

What a strange and unusual game. I really was not expecting the survival aspects of the title to be so prevalent; I was expecting more of a narrated story with puzzles aspects. I am no stranger to hardcore survival, I am actually very fond of the genre, so I am learning to adapt to the sparsity of food that is able to be acquired. It is quite brutal, and keeping off death's doorstep is a constant fight to maintain balance. It relies heavily on interaction with townsfolk both to unfold the story and to trade goods. The cuts scenes are done well, and all have animated characters along with the dialog. Time is limited; trying to accomplish everything you can in a day will normally be impossible, so you must prioritize what is most important to you. The game reminded me a lot of We Happy Few with different mechanics at play, the layout of the game world is well-done, the looting mechanic is well-designed. I was getting rather addicted to the game as I dug deeper and deeper into the story. But as I explained above, I am going to wait to continue my play at a later date. I look forward to the issues being fixed so I may continue my journey as the Haruspex! The title has a fair price line for the length of game play, and a good replayability factor.


Review written by DamageInc.for!


+ Imaginative Mechanics
+ Creative Art-Style
+ Achievements
+ Trading Cards


- Optimization Issues
- Memory Leak

Review Summary

Pathologic 2: A Bizarre Mind-boggling Journey into Madness & Despair during an Epidemic that is Decimating Your Home Town!

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Zeepond Rating: 6/10